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J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2004 Nov;311(2):537-46. Epub 2004 Jul 15.

Characterization of the interaction of indiplon, a novel pyrazolopyrimidine sedative-hypnotic, with the GABAA receptor.

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Department of Pharmacology, Neurocrine Biosciences Inc., 12790 El Camino Real, San Diego, CA 92130, USA.


Clinically used benzodiazepine and nonbenzodiazepine sedative-hypnotic agents for the treatment of insomnia produce their therapeutic effects through allosteric enhancement of the effects of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA at the GABA(A) receptor. Indiplon is a novel pyrazolopyrimidine sedative-hypnotic agent, currently in development for insomnia. Using radioligand binding studies, indiplon inhibited the binding of [(3)H]Ro 15-1788 (flumazenil) to rat cerebellar and cerebral cortex membranes with high affinity (K(i) values of 0.55 and 0.45 nM, respectively). [(3)H]Indiplon binding to rat cerebellar and cerebral cortex membranes was reversible and of high affinity, with K(D) values of 1.01 and 0.45 nM, respectively, with a pharmacological specificity consistent with preferential labeling of GABA(A) receptors containing alpha1 subunits. In "GABA shift" experiments and in measurements of GABA-induced chloride conductance in rat cortical neurons in culture, indiplon behaved as an efficacious potentiator of GABA(A) receptor function. In both the radioligand binding and electrophysiological experiments, indiplon had a higher affinity than zolpidem or zaleplon. These in vitro properties are consistent with the in vivo properties of indiplon as an effective sedative-hypnotic acting through allosteric potentiation of the GABA(A) receptor.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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